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Carolians slip to another disappointing defeat
11:48am Monday 30th September 2013 in Local
One positive of the match was the performance of debutant Harry McBeth at full back, who made two try-saving tackles, was solid under the high ball and counter attacked well when the opportunity arose.
The home side started the match brightly when they charged down an attempted clearance from the kick off, and Alex Baldwin scored a try from the resulting five-meter scrum. Sam Taylor added the conversion.
Further pressure created a penalty opportunity, but the decision was taken to kick to touch and KCs failed to secure possession from the lineout. An error in the backs when KCs were attacking then gave Stafford their first opportunity to move into the KCs half, and they took full advantage to break out of defence and create some pressure of their own.
It looked as if the KCs defence had stood firm when they were awarded a penalty, but the decision was reversed when ill-discipline was spotted by the referee and a KCs’ player was sent to the sin bin for 10 minutes.
Stafford took advantage of their numerical superiority and scored their first try after 27 minutes when they secured good ball from a lineout, retained possession through a number of phases and then created an overlap on the blind side. Stafford were in full control of the game at this stage, and continued to attack.
KCs lost a defensive scrum and Stafford again went through the phases before a clever inside pass made space for their full back to cross for their second try.
Stafford increased their lead when the KCs backs were again caught in possession, and a penalty was converted to give them a 13-7 half time lead.
The second-half continued in much the same vein as the first, with KCs failing to make the most of any possession they won. A knock on from a high kick presented Stafford with an attacking scrum, and missed tackles allowed them to cross the line for a converted try to stretch their lead. KCs missed a penalty kick from 35 yards out in front of the posts, but Stafford did not make the same mistake on 17 minutes of the half when they converted a simple penalty of their own.
Captain Rob Delahay was brought off the bench to inject some energy into proceedings, and he did just that with some powerful runs through the Stafford defence. However, the support was lacking, and most attacks broke down without really threatening the Stafford line. In contrast Stafford took full advantage of the opportunities they created, and another converted try after 25 minutes of the half left KCs with a 23 point deficit.
The final 15 minutes of the match saw KCs regain some momentum, and Billy Bennett was driven over the line for a try, converted by Sam Taylor, to give them a glimmer of hope. However, Stafford managed the game well, and kicked deep into KCs territory when they had possession. KCs stuck to their task, and after the forwards had made a number of drives to gain ground the ball was moved along the backs for Laurence Hughes to glide through a gap for a try, again converted by Sam Taylor.
Stafford were out on their feet at this stage, but there was not enough time left for KCs to add to their score.
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